Sports Illustrated is reporting that the Rays are entertaining offers for Jorge Cantu. Moving Cantu would go a long ways to settling the Rays crowded infield situation. In the short-term, B. J. Upton would likely become the “most-days” second baseman and Brendan Harris would be on the roster as the backup middle infielder. In the long-run, the team may want Akinori Iwamura at second base and either Joel Guzman (sooner) or Evan Longoria (later) at third base. The team is not likely to put Muu-Rah at second base anytime soon as he has plenty of adjustments that he already needs to worry about.
If the Rays want to trade Cantu now is the time to do it. He is still only 25 and his only healthy campaign produced 28 home runs and 117 RBI. Cantu will be arbitration eligible at the end of 2007 but will not be eligible for free agency for three more years.
An ideal suitor would be the New York Mets, but we can understand any hesitancy they would have in dealing with the Rays. The Mets opening day starter at second base is likely to be Jose Valentin. If our math is correct, and we like to think it is, he is 85 years old. The Mets also have what is considered by many the deepest and strongest bullpen in baseball (it would have to be when all your starting pitchers are in their 50s), and well…The Rays bullpen is not so deep and not so strong.